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Federal Workers' Compensation - Fraud and Abuse, Part 2 Hearing Before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, March 31, 1982

NCJ Number
Date Published
93 pages
In the second day of this March 1982 hearing, committee investigators reported on efforts of the Department of Labor (DOL) to control fraud and abuse in the Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA), and DOL officials replied to charges that they had made little progress since July 1981 hearings highlighted fraudulent abuse in the FECA claims system.
Staff investigators first summarized their 8-month review of the DOL's Federal workers' compensation program which involved site visits to major cities, interviews with district offices and claimants, and meetings with other Federal agencies. They criticized the DOL's failure to suspend administratively doctors convicted of fraud while it was researching legal alternatives and emphasized the need for a suspension/disbarment mechanism. These witnesses also outlined several areas where the DOL did not fulfill promises made to congressional committees, such as the failure to provide fee schedules to all district offices as a cost containment tool, the lack of a full-time medial staff at DOL, and an inadequate information system. The DOL's inspector general reported on his office's efforts to investigate claimant fraud, the need for improved ways to verify claimants' income, controls over provider fraud, third-party debt collection, and adult activities. The DOL administrator for the FECA program detailed steps taken to improve claims processing and system security, but commented that legislative changes were also needed. Committee members were particularly critical of this witness regarding the DOL's failure to implement fee schedules as well as other delays in initiating reforms. The appendixes contain witnesses' prepared statements and correspondence from the DOL. For Part I, see NCJ 82393.